September 28 was officially Day 1 of the 8th Annual Express Yourself...Authors' Conference, sponsored by Infinity Publishing, and I have to share some of what I observed and learned. First, I feel I should clarify that I was recently published by traditional publisher Kunati Books, a new company based in Ontario, Canada, with offices in Florida, US. Kunati has made it very clear that they wish to support my endeavors to help other authors and they know that I am particularly passionate about self-publishing, since I originally self-published 3 very successful titles, and not with Infinity (sorry, guys!). Publishing companies like Kunati make an author's journey far more satisfying, and I must thank them for this support.
That being said, I must also thank Infinity Publishing for allowing me to be a small part of their journey. I feel honored to be part of this conference and share my experiences with other authors. I have gotten a true sense of "family" with these Infinity authors, employees and the management, and they have extended this to many authors published by other companies, including myself. They have all made me feel extremely welcome and valued. Thank you!
There are so many things that have impressed me over the years about Infinity's strategies, service and journey. I have been 'watching' them for about 6 years, and became their Canadian Author Liaison less than a year ago. Today I had the pleasure of touring Infinity Publishing's facilities, and again...WOW! I toured one other publishing company a few years ago, and I have to say, Infinity has far surpassed anything I saw there. Not only is this company efficient in their processes (largely due, I think, to the sharp wit and bubbly authority presented by their office 'queen' Michelle), Infinity is like a well-oiled, organized machine that breathes synergistically with its authors. The company is clean and environmentally conscious, printing 288 pages a minute and anywhere from 100-200 books per hour, depending on the books. I watched covers being printed, laminated, bound, cropped, all within minutes. (And, Kelly, I even had a chance to see how your book's information has been packaged! ;)
After breakfast, Tom Gregory, President of Infinity Publishing, welcomed the conference attendees, and I found him to be genuinely interested in not only the success of his company, but the success of the authors--ALL authors! You don't find that often. I never met the President of the other self-publishing company I toured. :) One thing that impressed me with Infinity is the expense that this publishing company puts into having an event that benefits their authors and other publishers' authors. They have made the Express Yourself...Authors' Conference affordable for any author.
I was also impressed with Infinity's ability to get top-notch speakers to present at their conferences. I have been receiving Jerry D. Simmons' newsletter for a few years now and finally got to meet him. It is awesome to put a face and voice to a name and newsletter one receives via email. :) Other guest speakers were Dan Poynter, Penny Sansevieri and Brian Jud, who are big names in book marketing. Infinity also managed to entice Dave Lieber, an award-winning columnist, and Eric Kampmann, publisher of the controversial O.J. book If I Did It: Confessions of the Killer by the Goldman Family. I'll go more into what these speakers talked about as soon as I have more time.
P.S. Jerry, I promise I will get you some articles on marketing books as soon as possible and I look forward to being of assistance to other writers via your newsletter. Thank you for this opportunity. :) CKT